The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation yesterday held an e-briefing, during which ambassadors and consuls accredited to the country were briefed on the latest developments and precautionary measures implemented by the UAE in light of the outbreak of coronavirus, COVID-19M, around the world.
Khalid Abdullah Humaid Belhoul, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, MoFAIC, and Dr. Khalid Ibrahim Abdullah Al Mazrouei, MoFAIC Assistant Under-Secretary briefed accredited diplomats on the latest developments, precautionary measures and procedures the UAE rolled out against the COVID-19.
The online briefing was broadcast directly from the Ministry’s headquarters in Abu Dhabi and came in conjunction with the UAE’s decision to temporarily suspend - effective 17th March - all visas to all foreigners, with the exception of diplomatic passport holders.
Accredited ambassadors and consuls were also informed of the UAE’s decision to suspend all inbound and outbound flights with Lebanon, Turkey, Syria and Iraq, with effect from 17th March, and until further notice.
Both moves are part of the proactive precautionary and preventive health measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus and come as a response to the World Health Organisation's declaration of COVID-19 as a pandemic, a development that reflects the high risks now associated with travel.
MoFAIC’s Under-Secretary asserted that all accredited ambassadors and consuls in the country will be kept informed of all developments via e-briefing, so they may, in turn, communicate the same to their nationals. He also added that these measures stem from the responsibility the UAE has for its citizens and residents and to preserve the safety of all and as part of efforts exerted to combat coronavirus around the world and in solidarity with other countries around the world, to overcome this crisis.
Questions and inquiries that were raised during the e-briefing were duly answered.